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Kickstarter – STEM System Puts Virtual Reality in Your Hands

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Immersive virtual reality could be much closer than we think, if a Kickstarter for a wireless motion controller posted Thursday meets its goals.

The STEM System is a wireless, modular motion tracking control system developed by Sixense. It will allow PC, Mac and Linux games to track the player’s position with up to five points on the body.

While earlier versions of this motion controller system are available for the Razer Hydra controller, it’s the first time the system is wireless, according to the Kickstarter page. The goal of the Kickstarter is to get the wireless STEM System into developers’ hands so they can create games for it.

The STEM System consists of several parts: STEM units that fit into the controller or pack, STEM base that manages all pieces, STEM controller featuring an analog joystick, buttons and bumpers and a STEM Pack that attaches to the player’s legs, head or torso. That means the STEM could track all of the player’s limbs as well as his or her head and body while playing a game. To see how this could look, check out this indie prototype in which the creator strapped half of a Razer Hydra to his chest to simulate ducking behind cover while taking fire.

The STEM system is natural fit for the Oculus Rift, the still-in-development virtual reality headset that also harnessed Kickstarter last year to spur developer interest. There are several interesting projects in the works using the Rift, including a space combat game by EVE Online developer CCP Games. The SDK is available for Windows, Mac OS and Linux.

The Kickstarter campaign already passed $150,000 within the first couple hours of launch, 60% of the project’s $250,000 goal.

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